The Corner

No Lessons Learned from the Oil Spill

Not knowing much about the issue, I really liked this editorial today in the L.A. Times by the Cato Institute’s Jerry Taylor and Peter Van Doren. They argue that no lessons have been learned from the Gulf oil spill and that, basically, instead of moving energy policy forward, this tragedy has just been used to rehash the same, likely useless policy positions. On one hand, we have the green movement:

The environmentalists’ call to flatly reject expanded offshore drilling as unacceptably risky is ill-considered. The logical implication of the argument is that all offshore drilling ought to be prohibited, not just plans to expand drilling zones at the margin.

On the other hand:

The Republican argument, however, is little better than the environmentalist argument. House Minority Leader John Boehner issued a news release May 3 arguing that the spill is but one more reason to adopt the GOP’s “all of the above” energy agenda. Exactly why an oil spill implies the need for more subsidies to oil, gas, coal and nuclear energy companies is unclear.

Read more about how both sides are wrong, are fighting the same old battles, and have failed to propose anything that would improve the energy-policy debate going forward.


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